Summer 2005 Forward to a Friend

Your Turn Letters from our Readers

Top-Rated Outback

I just found another good reason to appreciate my Outback Wagon! Based on the annual vehicle insurance ratings from my auto insurer, the Outbacks (2002-2005 models) are among those top-rated cars on its Liability Rating Index, Vehicle Safety Discount and Damage & Theft Index. I feel so wonderful that my car is among some Audis, BMWs, Mercedes, Saabs and Volvos for the same measures.

Gene Young
Mountain View, CA

First Love

I finally bought my first new car – and it’s a Subaru! I love it!

My first Subaru experience was in 1970, as a poor college student. My girlfriend loaned me an older Subaru car. I call it a car, but it barely sat two people. It was so tiny, with 10-inch wheels, perhaps 10 feet long. But it had a two-stroke engine that got about 50 miles to the gallon, and it was so much fun to drive! Do you recall these vehicles?

Richard Wendel
Reno, NV

You have described the Subaru 360, the first Subaru car. It was introduced in Japan in 1958 and built until 1970.

At the End of the Rainbow

As I was driving home, I noticed the rainbow and had to stop to take a few pictures.

My WRX takes me safely through mud, under the rain, to the end of the rainbow!

Location: Fields along Molera Road (Moss Landing/Castroville, CA).

Heidi Funes-Fonseca
Freedom, CA

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Baja in Baja

Thought you’d like to see our Baja in Baja. On the beach at Bahía San Quintín, Baja California Norte. We drove from Los Angeles, California, to Cabo San Lucas with three adults (my mom is holding the camera), luggage, cooler and fishing gear (rod case on roof rack) and averaged 25 miles per gallon for a 2,600-mile round trip.

The Baja is my second Subaru, wife’s first, and I don’t get to drive it very often. I will be looking for another one for me soon. Baja is the way to go, car and vacation.

Don’t be afraid to try the trip. All the horror stories you may have heard about Baja California are not true. I’ve made the drive several times with no problems. Yes, it is an adventure, and worth the time.

Douglas Whigham
Inglewood, CA

Wild About Death Valley

I have wanted to go to Death Valley for many years, but never had. We would pass the signs that said “Death Valley 102 Miles” every time we went skiing or backpacking in the Eastern Sierras, but it took the media touting the magnificent wildflowers that bloomed this year to get me to make the trip.

One major problem was that all of the accommodations in and around Death Valley were totally booked, so I started checking on campgrounds. We found one that had 1,000 sites, including an overflow lot for tenters.

We have a Subaru Outback, and we decided that we could put the seats down and sleep in the Outback (I wanted no scorpion/tarantula-type critters crawling on me). So we threw our sleeping bags and folding chairs in the Subaru and went to Death Valley on Saturday and Sunday of Easter weekend. We had a gorgeous view from our campsite and a pretty good night’s sleep in the Subaru.

And the wildflowers were spectacular.

We would not have made that trip without having the flexibility of sleeping in the Subaru.

Paula Poll
Venice, CA

Legacy and the Work of Art

I’ve seen some interesting photos of Subaru vehicles being put to good use in Drive magazine and think mine ranks right up there. I am a sculptor and create my artwork in clay, then drive it to the foundry where they make a mold and cast it.

The photo is of “Peace Offering,” my latest monumental-size sculpture, in clay in the back of my Legacy, headed for the foundry. It’s not exactly a joy ride. I’m transporting a few hundred pounds of clay that I’ve slaved over day and night for maybe six months. A bad bump could set me back. But I’ve had good luck, as you can see from the finished photo of the sculpture at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MACAY) in Merida of Yucatan, Mexico.

By the way, I know the inner dimensions of the cargo area well – by design, I limit the size of some of my sculptures so they can fit.

Michael Alfano, Sculptor
Hopkinton, MA

Drivers in Training

My friend Justin Keeler and I bought our first Subaru vehicles two years ago. He bought a 2002 WRX Wagon, and I bought a 2002 WRX Sedan. Since then, I traded my WRX in for a 2005 STI, and he had his first child – Layeth Ula Keeler.

We put our heads together and decided my 8-year-old son, Gabriel, and little Layeth needed the opportunities we never had – early training for a career in World Rally Championship racing. Attached is their first photo shoot with my STI. All I have to say is, Petter, watch your back. These two are gunning for your number-one spot on the Subaru World Rally team.

Layeth is sporting his SWRT outfit, and Gabe is sporting the SWRT fleece jacket.

In the end, you will have the opportunity to say, “We saw them first.”

Craig L. McDaniel
Casper, WY